Seafood from Norway joins forces with Simon Hulstone to elevate the Young National Chef of the Year finalists at Mentor Day

In a bid to support the next generation of UK chefs, Seafood from Norway (SfN), sponsors of the Craft Guild of Chef’s Young National Chef of the Year (YNCOTY) competition, recently attended the highly anticipated Finalist Mentor Day, alongside long-term SfN chef partner, Simon Hulstone.


The YNCOTY competition is organised by David Mulcahy, food innovation and sustainability director at Sodexo UK and Ireland and vice-president of the Craft Guild of Chefs. Hosted at the prestigious Waitrose Food Innovation Studio, Finalist Mentor Day constitutes a pivotal cornerstone of the ongoing competition, providing the opportunity for all sponsors to meet and educate the talented YNCOTY and National Chef of the Year (NCOTY) finalists. Chefs were also privvy to a thought-provoking panel discussion with input from Lisa Goodwin-Allen, executive chef at Northcote and 2022/2023 Chair of Judges for YNCOTY.

The day consisted of a series of masterclasses, skills challenges and a panel discussion, including an inspiring recipe showcase and product demonstration from Michelin-starred chef, Simon Hulstone, all with a keen focus on the potential of responsibly sourced Norwegian cod.

During the session, finalists received a valuable education on why origin matters, and learnt how Hulstone has witnessed first-hand, how Norway is a leading seafood nation that can offer world-class, sustainable seafood to the hospitality sector. In addition to offering a filleting demonstration on a whole Norwegian cod to teach the talented chefs about waste reduction and portioning formats for restaurant dishes, essential culinary insights were shared. These insights encompassed kitchen techniques, plating strategies, and more.

Finalists also benefitted from a skills challenge centred around Norwegian cod and were later guided through an immersive product showcase room, where they were introduced to the diverse array of offerings from Seafood from Norway, proudly represented by the Norwegian Seafood Council.

Reflecting on the significance of Mentor Day, Victoria Braathen, UK Director for the Norwegian Seafood Council, expressed:

“The Craft Guild of Chef’s Young National Chef of the Year competition is a defining moment in these chefs’ careers, propelling them to new heights of aspiration. We want to help reward the best new and emerging talent in the UK and encourage the culinary stars of tomorrow to experiment and cook with Norwegian seafood.

“Norway is surrounded by cold, clear Arctic waters, creating opportunities to catch high quality seafood, such as cod. In addition to the excellent taste of the lean, white meat of the fish, Norwegian cod is also packed full with a number of important nutrients, making it a perfect match for a wide variety of dishes.

“We hope working with Norwegian cod and learning all about its great qualities from Simon Hulstone himself has inspired the chefs to fine-tune their dishes and skills ahead of the final. We look forward to seeing how Norwegian cod is used in the first courses and extend our heartfelt best wishes.”

The 2023 Young National Chef of the Year will enjoy an educational culinary trip of a lifetime to Norway, hosted by Seafood from Norway to celebrate responsibly sourced seafood. 

More information about responsibly sourced Seafood from Norway can be found at